The Philippine Army (PA) and a still unidentified armed group clashed in the hinterlands of Bilar town on Saturday morning.
This was confirmed by First Lieutenant Grace Remonde, civil military officer of the PA’s 47th Infantry Battalion (IB).
According to Remonde, a platoon from the 47th IB whose troops conducted routine patrols encountered the still unidentified armed men at the boundary of Barangay Cambigsi and Barangay Cansumbol.
A gunfight between the state forces and the armed men ensued at past 9 a.m.
There have been no reported casualties so far from both sides.
“The batallion has yet to report as they are waiting for further account from the elements on site,” Remonde said.
Additional forces from the 47th IB and the Philippine National Police have been deployed to conduct pursuit operations against the still undetermined number of armed men.
Bilar police chief Lt. Ramon Rulona said that the armed men were suspected to be New People’s Army rebels.
According to Rulona, blocking forces and checkpoints have been set up in Bilar and surrounding towns.
“Sa pagkakaron ang kapolisan nato ang uban nag-conduct og checkpoint, naa puy uban nag blocking force sa mga possible exit sa pikas na tropa,” he said.